Matthew Byam Shaw
Matthew trained as an actor at RADA before turning to producing after he was handed Charlotte Jones’s In Flame. He has produced in partnership with many notable theatres including the Almeida Theatre, Donmar Warehouse, Royal Court Theatre, National Theatre, Chichester Festival Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company and is a long time board member of both the Bush Theatre and the Sheffield Crucible. Transfers from these theatres produced by Matthew include Frost/Nixon, Don Carlos, Red and Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies. He has also produced many productions straight into the West End and on Broadway including Flare Path and The Audience with Helen Mirren and is a member of the RADA council. Matthew was also a producer of the Oscar® nominated Universal/Working Title film Frost/Nixon and is an Executive Producer of the newly announced Netflix series The Crown, which is based on Peter Morgan’s The Audience.
Nia started her career producing on the fringe in Edinburgh and London, before working on her first West End show at the Theatre Royal Haymarket. She spent a number of years working in management for the Royal Shakespeare Company and then at the Royal Court on all in-house productions and West End transfers, before returning to the West End to join Matthew and Nick at Act Productions. Nia was the General Manager there for six years working on all productions, including Wicked, Frost/Nixon, Edward Scissorhands, Legally Blonde, Spring Awakening, Don Carlos and Mary Stuart. In 2010 Nia formed Playful with Matthew and Nick. She currently leads on all productions managed by Playful, including Wicked and Kinky Boots, and heads up Playful’s exceptional production team. Nia remains passionate about developing new work and new writing and is on the Board of Paines Plough, as well as the League of Independent Producers and the Stage One Council. She has previously served on the Boards of Act Productions and Dumbfounded Theatre.
Nick’s interest in the theatre dates back to his school days, but he learned the West End business during his time as an agent. He also became involved with the film industry and worked on several films including The Go Between and The Railway Children, before returning to theatre. He managed and produced for HM Tennent, Churchill Theatre Bromley and Theatre of Comedy at the Shaftesbury Theatre as well as producing in his own right in the West End and on tour – in total over 80 productions. Nick programmed the West End theatres for Act Productions and was also their Executive Producer. For over 20 years he was part time Chief Executive of Stage One, a registered charity supporting new UK theatre producers. He has served on several theatre boards and is currently on the Board of The Society of London Theatre for which he was President for three years.
Liz joined Playful in March 2016 as the Production Assistant on the UK/international tour of Wicked. She previously worked as Assistant Finance Manager at the Donmar Warehouse and, before that, as Producer for OperaUpClose at the King’s Head Theatre, having started there as an intern. She has an MA in Musical Theatre (Producing) from Goldsmiths, University of London.
Emilie started as an intern in 2011 before joining Playful full time and has assisted across both Wicked London, which she now looks after, and the Wicked UK and Ireland tour. She previously worked for Pippa Ailion Casting and Jorg Betts Associates after studying Drama and Theatre Studies at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Kate joined Playful in February 2015 to work on Wicked and now looks after Kinky Boots. Previously, Kate was Production Co-ordinator at Old Vic Productions (now Greene Light Stage), working in the West End on The Pajama Game, Good People and Private Lives. Prior to that, Kate worked as Assistant General Manager at The Old Vic Theatre Company and as Associate Producer at Opera Holland Park.
Roger is a founding Associate of Playful and has worked with Matthew, Nia and Nick for the past 15 years. He is an independent producer both in the West End and on tour, currently engaged in a world tour of Under Milk Wood, and is the European representative of the BAM Theatres New York.
Jesse joined Playful as Accounts Assistant in 2014 after studying Accountancy and Finance at the University of Huddersfield. She works across all productions supporting the finance department in various roles including payroll, purchase ledger and royalties.
Holly joined Playful in January 2017 as Production Intern. She has previously worked at the Finborough Theatre as a Production Assistant on After October, produced by Troupe Theatre. Holly has a BA (Hons) degree in English from The University of Nottingham. Whilst at university she directed a devised performance, and produced and performed at The Nottingham New Theatre.
Head of Finance
Liz is a founding member of Playful, having worked at Act Productions for just six months prior to that. Ably assisted by the rest of the finance team, Liz manages the finances for all the shows Playful produces and general manages, as well as the company’s finances.
Daisy joined Playful in 2015 as an Administrative Assistant on Playful's touring shows, and is currently the Production Assistant on Groundhog Day. She previously worked as an Assistant Stage Manager for companies including the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre.
Production Office Assistant
Katherine joined Playful in 2016 as Production Office Assistant. She has previously worked for The Corner Shop PR, Sonia Friedman Productions and Theatre Royal Stratford East. Katherine has a BA(hons) degree in Contemporary Theatre Practice from the University of Bedfordshire.
Since joining Playful in 2011, Aimee’s projects have included Million Dollar Quartet, Shrek The Musical and co-ordinating Dirty Dancing both on tour in the UK and at the Piccadilly Theatre. In 2015 she began working on the development and subsequent production of Groundhog Day at The Old Vic, and is currently looking after Don Juan in Soho. Prior to Playful, Aimee worked for Ambassador Theatre Group at the New Wimbledon Theatre and for Warwick Arts Centre.
Josh joined Playful in 2015 as Production Intern before becoming Administrative Assistant for Wicked. Prior to Playful, Josh worked for Cameron Mackintosh Ltd. as a dresser on the revival production of Miss Saigon and as an intern on Urinetown, Miss Saigon and Wicked. Josh has a BA Hons Degree in Theatre Arts (Design & Technical) from Middlesex University.
Payroll & Purchase Ledger Manager
Lindsey joined Playful in 2012 and works on finance and payroll across all productions produced and general managed by the company. Lindsey originally trained as a teacher before becoming an accountant working in charitable as well as private business sectors.
Jack joined Playful in 2016 as the Administrative Assistant for Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. He previously worked for Ambassador Theatre Group (West End), and later the Royal Shakespeare Company on Matilda the Musical. Prior to that, Jack gained a Masters degree in Creative Producing from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.
Hareena joined Playful as Finance Assistant in August 2016. She is currently in her placement year, studying Economics at the University of Surrey. She works across all productions supporting the finance department in various roles.
Lucy joined Playful as an intern in 2013. She currently works as Production Assistant on An American In Paris, having previously worked on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. After studying Drama at Loughborough University, Lucy was an intern at Ambassador Theatre Group and assisted the Marketing and Community Outreach teams at Birmingham Repertory Theatre.
Production Accountant & Contracts Supervisor
Hanna came to Playful as one of the company’s first Stage One Apprentices and now works across the financial and contractual aspects of all productions. Previous employment includes Mark Rubinstein Ltd, Shared Experience and Cheek by Jowl, and representing Independent Producers on the Old Vic New Voices T.S. Eliot US/UK Exchange. Hanna also lectures at City Lit in Arts Administration and is a trustee for Upstart Theatre.
Senior Production Controller
A founder member of Playful, Janet joined Matthew, Nia and Nick at Act Productions in 2006, having previously been General Manager for producer Jenny King. For Playful, Janet has managed productions such as Blithe Spirit, The King’s Speech, Flare Path and Krapp’s Last Tape, and oversees investment, legal and employment matters across every show. Janet is a Director of UK Theatre and has a PhD in Ancient History.
Amy Powell Yeates
Production & Development Co-ordinator
Amy joined Playful in 2012 as a Stage One Apprentice before working on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory for two years. She now works on the development and management of new projects for Playful. Recent projects include The Goat, One Love, Hangmen, American Buffalo, The Audience and Wolf Hall. Previously she worked at the Barbican Centre, Theatre Royal Haymarket, Donmar Warehouse and produced on the London Fringe. She is also a Mentor for Arts Emergency.
Annie joined Playful in 2010 as our first ever intern before becoming full time Executive Assistant to Matthew, Nia and Nick. Now working as Executive Co-ordinator, Annie has also assisted on several productions including The Audience, The Weir and Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies.
Production & Development Assistant
Alex joined Playful in 2014 and has assisted on The Audience, Kinky Boots and Shrek The Musical UK and Ireland tour. He currently works on No Man’s Land and on the development of new projects for Playful. He has previously worked for the Barbican, RSC, Frantic Assembly, Kate Morley PR, is a co-founding Artist and Producer with non zero one and has produced independently on the London Fringe.
Beth joined Playful in 2017 after 8 years at the National Youth Theatre, producing large scale shows across the UK, the West End and internationally. Prior to NYT Beth has produced work at Shakespeare’s Globe and the National Theatre. Beth is a Trustee for Durham University’s Student Union and a member of the British Council UK-Gulf Creative Sector Advisory Group. Beth is currently working on Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill.
Georgia joined Playful in 2015 as the Administrative Assistant on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and is currently the Production Assistant on Kinky Boots. She previously worked as Office Administrator in the production department at Ambassador Theatre Group, having started as an intern in 2013. Prior to that, Georgia gained experience at Borkowski Arts & Ents and the New Victoria Theatre after studying at Liverpool University.
Simon is a founding member of Playful, having worked with Matthew, Nia and Nick since 2009. Originally in stage management, he moved into general management at Ambassador Theatre Group and has since worked for the Donmar Warehouse and on many productions both in the West End and on tour. Current responsibilities include the forthcoming productions of An American in Paris and Wicked (UK/International Tour) and overseeing all the tour booking for the company.